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January 22, 2006

Acupuncture Turns off Pain Centers: BBC Experiment

The BBC has a new TV series called Alternative Medicine: The Evidence, presented by scientist Professor Kathy Sykes from Bristol University. The first program demonstrates a study they conducted using the glorious fMRI and Acupuncture.

The study involved two groups undergoing two different types of needling with real time fMRIs being taken. The first group had a point on the back of the hand (I think LI4 but not sure) needled 1 centimeter with twisting to achieve de qi, the other had the same point needled only 1 millimeter without any manipulation. What they found is that the superficial needling group showed a typical pain or touch response to the needle being inserted, and that's it. The deep needle group, however, showed a deactivation of the limbic system.

It was previously thought areas of the cerebral cortex were excited by Acupuncture, not deactivated. This leads the scientists to believe they have found part of the reasoning behind Acupunctures effect on relieving pain.

The Independent Online article: here

Posted by Admin at January 22, 2006 10:56 AM